Monday, August 15, 2011

Smashwords and Amazon Kindle

Story continued from 8/12/11.

After two weeks passed without Smashwords approving Godspeed Inc. for the Premium Catalog (which would allow distribution to Kindle, Nook, Sony, and so on), I began to get nervous.

What was happening?

I searched online about delays with Smashwords, and I saw that other authors had similar concerns.  Then I found one author who recommended using Smashwords for distribution to all the other ebook outlets except Amazon Kindle.  Dealing with Amazon was easy and a pleasure.  She'd also tried dealing with Barnes & Noble's Nook directly, but she found that to be impossible.  Her advice:  let Smashwords deal with Nook and everything else except Amazon Kindle.

Meanwhile, while I was waiting, another (mainly) SF writer-friend, Joy V. Smith,  became interested in publishing an ebook using Smashwords.  So with my newly developed Smashwords skills, I helped to help guide her.  She was able to conquer all the formatting parts, except she didn't have a simple photo editor to create a picture for the cover (a vital part of ebook publishing).  Her picture was simple enough--a house, since her ebook chronicled her experiences remodeling an older house.

I used a simple editing program called Lviewpro to crop her picture and add her name and title.  She even gave me credit as the book cover designer.  I highly recommend visiting the Amazon page for her book:

 Joy also regularly writes three blogs.  Two are listed here:

 Finally, Godspeed Inc. was approved for the Premium Catalog (about two days after I emailed Mark Corker who let me know his team was backed up) and appeared several days later at Barnes & Noble for Nook.  But more weeks passed, and it still didn't appear on Amazon.

Then I found another author who also advised opting out of distribution to Amazon via Smashwords and to use Kindle Direct. So, I did.  At first, I had to list Godspeed for $.99, but once Amazon listed it as free, downloads took off like a rocket.  I marveled at 20 to 50 downloads in an hour. I started obsessively refreshing the numbers page just to see the download number increase.

I realized that Smashwords was never going to distribute Godspeed to Amazon because generally Amazon did not handle free ebooks (but was happy to reduce prices to zero if other outlets priced an ebook that way).

Amazon is a monster with hundreds of thousands of Kindle readers looking for free ebooks.  For a few days, Godspeed Inc:  A Naomi Kinder Adventure was even listed as Number 1 on the Bestsellers in Science Fiction Adventure free category on Amazon.

Here's Godspeed's link on Amazon:

 I still have to tell about the importance of reviews and my novel:  Rescuing the Future:  A Naomi Kinder Novel.


To be continued.

1 comment:

  1. Obviously, I've been away for a year.

    I must apologize for not posting for such a long time, but work and writing overwhelmed my time.